Stop human rights violations in Valley: Mufti to PM

Excelsior Correspondent

PDP patron Mufti Mohammad Sayeed addressing an election rally in Handwara on Wednesday.
PDP patron Mufti Mohammad Sayeed addressing an election rally in Handwara on Wednesday.

SRINAGAR, Nov 5: Defending the public outrage over the killing of two innocent youths at Chattergam, Jammu and Kashmir Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) patron Mufti Mohammad Sayeed today asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to ensure that the repeated pledge on curbing human rights violations in Kashmir are strictly adhered to.
“The Prime Minister must ensure reinforcement of the resolve of his predecessors to work through peaceful means and through public participation towards restoration of peace in the state,” Sayeed said addressing an election rally in Handwara area of Kupwara district.
Two youths were killed and two others injured in army firing at Chattergam in Budgam district on Monday, leading to protests and widespread condemnation from political parties.
Sayeed said although no measure can heal the deep wounds of such dastardly acts, in the prevailing dismal situation, tangible action at the highest level could to some extent “restore the hurt psyche of the people and salvage their bruised dignity”.
Measures like reduction in the number of troops and revocation of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) have become more than imperative, as these could be the fundamental inputs to the lasting peace in the state, he said.
“The killing of innocents cannot by justified by any means and such tragic incidents have the potential of reversing the peace and normalisation efforts. “Unfortunately, almost similar circumstances had led to eruption of turmoil in Kashmir in the early 1990s,” Sayeed added.
He said the people of Jammu and Kashmir have suffered immensely because of more than two decades long dark era of death and destruction and they do not want a similar ominous situation to be enforced on them again.
Sayeed said the Centre must, without any further delay, reach out to and engage with all sections of the society including the separatist leaders in a productive dialogue process to resolve the issues. “Unless these steps are taken, the space for reconciliation will squeeze further in Kashmir and desperation levels will increase…,” he said.
Calling for reverting to the ‘Healing Touch Policy’ put in place by PDP in 2002, Sayeed said his party-led government had not only created a sense of security among the people but also restored dignity of the common masses by implementing peace and reconciliation policies.
He said in post-2002 era, PDP had transformed the political discourse in J&K by piloting successfully and with conviction the crucial issues concerning the State and its people. “Unfortunately, the massive effort that had gone into creating a new atmosphere of peace, reconciliation and resolution in and around J&K seems at the real risk of going waste,” he said and added that the PDP-led Coalition Government had adopted a multi-pronged strategy to seek redressel of the security, political, economic and developmental concerns of the State.
On this occasion, Member Legislative Council and Panthers Party leader Syed Rafiq Ahmad alongwith his supporters joined PDP.
Expressing faith in the PDP leadership, Rafiq said it is the only party with a clear pro-people agenda for Jammu and Kahsmir.
PDP candidate for Handwara assembly segment Ghulam Mohi-ud-Din Sofi, party candidate for Langate Assembly segment, G N Panditpuri, senior leaders Zafar Iqbal Manhas, Irfan Panditpuri, Advocate Mohammad Amin, Ghulam Mohammad Mir, Abdul Rashid Dar, Abdul Rashid Bhat and former SSP Syed Ashiq Bukhari also addressed the rally.

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